Money. How much of it can you have and still be godly? Is it more spiritual to be poor or more spiritual to be rich? What does money say about us and how do you get God's help to handle your money well?
That's today. To cause more conflict and tension in our relationships, spend money. Families and friendships can be torn apart because of one's handling or attitude toward money. This is why our kids and grandkids need a healthier approach rooted in the Bible. Today Chip continues our series, Leaving a Legacy That Lasts Forever, by unpacking what scripture says about being good stewards of what God has given us, and how that can lead to greater joy and fulfillment in life.
So if you're ready, here's Chip for today's message, Teach Them to Manage Their Wealth Wisely. I'm going to ask you a series of about five questions and then here's how I want you to think. With one part of your brain going, this is my answer to the question. And then the second is, how do you think those people that matter to you most would answer this question? Because I want you to begin to ponder, where are they at with this issue of wealth and money? So this is my answer. And then I want you to see, gosh, were they answered about the same or oh, we're really on different pages.
And it's just a little diagnostic tool. Are you ready? Okay, question number one. Talking about money, how much is enough? Write a number. I mean, don't give me one of those soft, just enough to cover our needs and live comfortably, whatever that means. I mean, if it's a million, write a million. If it's five million, five million, five hundred thousand, how much money is enough to really live and be who God wants you to be from where you're living for you in your world? Write it down.
And then I want you to be thinking, what would my son, my daughter, the guys in my Bible study, what would they say? Question number two, how much is too much? Write down a dollar amount. In other words, if God gave you two million dollars, that would be enough, but 11 might kind of send you over the edge. Or 50 million dollars you feel like you could handle, or what you want is X a month, you wouldn't want a big stock. I don't know what you, but what's the answer to that question?
How much would be too much? You would say, God, please. Third question, can I be both godly and rich?
Yes or no? And then you want to think about how does the person you want to pass this on, how would they answer that? Can I both be godly and rich? Question number four, if riches and material goods can choke out spiritual life, I'm referring to that passage in Mark chapter four and the seed of God's word and it's four different kinds of soil and one of the soils is the thorny soil and the thorny soil grows up and it chokes out the very life, the word of God in a believer's heart. If that in fact is true, and it is because Jesus said it, is poverty God's calling for spiritual maturity and if not, what is? And it is okay to write on some of these answers, I don't know.
Like that's a good question, I don't know. But how would you answer that and then how would that guy you're discipling, how would one of your grandkids, how would one of your kids answer that? Final question, why does Jesus warn against the deceitfulness of riches? And what I want to talk about here is deceitful. Now the definition of when you're deceived, you don't know you're deceived.
I mean that's part of being deceived, right? And so apparently wealth has an ability to allow you to live as best you know in fellowship with God, obeying him and doing what you think is really good and right and fruitful and actually have your ladder leaning against the wrong wall, be totally off. Apparently there's something about money.
Now it's clear money's not in and of itself evil. We have wealthy people in Scripture, we have poor people in Scripture, but apparently according to Jesus, wealth or money has the power to deceive us into thinking we're doing okay when we're really not, which by the way I think is pretty scary. I remember my daughter when she was much younger, we were riding in the car and we have lived in very tiny little houses and we have taken quarters out of the back seat and we've had God miraculously provide and then my job and my world changed at different times and then I moved to Atlanta and God had blessed in a number of areas. We were riding in our little housing development and there's some big pretty trees and we were coming around the corner and Annie turned to me and said, dad? I said, yeah, she goes, are we rich? And my temptation was to say, well honey, we're in this subdivision and our houses are really nice, but they're really rich people. They live in the country club of the south, okay?
You know the mansions with the really big houses and the beautiful golf course and they have the statues out front. Now they're the really rich people, but I resisted that temptation and I said yes, Annie, we're rich. We have more than I ever dreamed we'd ever have. We have an abundance of everything. We used to have to live really tight and now if we want to go out to eat, we can go out to eat. We're rich as are most Americans when you look at it globally, but here's the deceitfulness of wealth. I just want to tap into this. I don't care where you're at. Your flesh and your human nature will take wherever you're at on the economic scale and you will unconsciously tilt about 10 to 20 degrees above you. They are rich people and you are sort of middle or upper middle class.
And by the way, it never ends. I was with an executive in Atlanta and he and I was a professional basketball player years ago with the Celtics and even at 62 he still plays. We played a little pickup and he's about 6'8 and we'd have a lot of fun and he really cares about our ministry and so I would teach these. They call them Atlanta Bible studies, you know, like two or three hundred business people and Big Gary would come up to me and say, hey, Chip, I'm telling you, I invited some of my friends. I said, yeah, great. He said, now, man, what you're doing, man, they need it. I mean, I think they could be a part of this thing. Chip, they're serious money.
Have you ever had anyone say that? Hey, hey, Chip, I mean, this is serious money. I mean, they're old wealth Atlanta.
Oh, and I'm thinking, you know, I mean, of course, in my mind, I'm here and Gary's here. I mean, he's a former professional basketball player. He owns his own company.
He has a place in Hilton Head. You know, he's a multimillionaire, but he does not see, he's probably worth, I don't know, 10, 12, 15 million, does not see himself as rich, but these people, they got serious money, right? Now, because of what I do, believe this or not, I've actually had the opportunity to do some of these conferences where they bring very, very wealthy people together and I've had with a straight face conversations with people who've told me, you know, I have a giving plan. I really want to help the kingdom, but once my portfolio goes under $500 million, I feel like I really need to back off and you laugh until maybe you got $500 million and you have a line and I have a line.
I will guarantee you do and that line is far different. If I could turn the clock back, well, I'd have to do it different numbers for different people, but 10 years for some 20 years, 30 years. But if you can imagine yourself in your late teens, early 20s, starting a career and someone freeze frame you and then boom, you didn't live it, but they said, okay, when you get to be 59 years old or 67 years old and you have this much money, you look and go, are you kidding me? I never have that much and you have it right now and yet you don't think you're wealthy.
You think you're sort of upwardly mobile and doing okay. In fact, we've had this big, big thing that's happened in the losing of money. I remember talking to another one of my very wealthy friends who's a great business guy who's gone bankrupt three times and so he has the most healthy view of money of anyone I've ever met in my life.
And I mean, you talk about a guy who gets, it's all God's, he says, because believe me, I can make it and lose it and make it and lose it. And he said, here's what people don't understand, is that everyone, you know, 10 years ago had X amount of dollars. Let's say you put, you know, four or $500,000 or $50,000 and I've just used numbers, but let's say, and then, you know, 10 years ago, let's say it went from a half a million to two and a half million. Or it went from five million to 20 million.
And that was 10 years ago. Well now, everything crashes and if you had, you know, a half a million, you've only got three. But you had nine and so, you know what, it's like, man, this is, I lost $6 million. My life stinks. Or I had $15 million, now I only have seven. Instead of, how many people have you heard talking about the downturn in the economy going, you know, five years ago or 10 years ago, I only had a million dollars and now I have nine.
What a bummer. Do you understand what I'm trying to help you see? You and I and this disease, Jesus said, it's with everybody. This disease is we reframe reality and money has this power to make us think in ways that totally do not correspond with what's true. And what we want to talk about, if that's true of us, imagine those children and those disciples and those people in your women's group and that young girl you're trying to help and those grandkids, imagine if that's true for all of you, many who've walked with the Lord a lot longer, how do you pass on what they need to manage their wealth in a wise way? I came across an article by Ray Padron, it's from Polstra and Dardaman, it's a private wealth council and I just want to read, I just want you to get how serious this is. This is a secular resource, so this isn't from a Christian background.
But he writes and he counsels very wealthy people about transfer of funds. He says, when it comes to learning values and decision making, there's one thing I found to be true. Some things are taught, some things are caught, and some things have to be learned the hard way, i.e.
experience. Just because our children grow up and leave home doesn't mean that parenting is over. As parents, we'll be given a host of opportunities to help guide them.
The methods and the tools may require a bit more sophistication, but the fact is I will always be ahead of them in life, its opportunities, and its responsibilities. One of the final experiences we create for our families will actually happen right after we leave this world. For many families, that experience is being left to chance more than they realize. Listen to this, it is estimated that approximately $52 trillion will change hands to the next generation between 1998 and 2052.
That's trillion, $52 trillion. Here's the bad news. Approximately 70% of the estates fail following their transition into the hands of heirs. That's right. 70% of heirs involuntarily lose control of the transfer of the assets by poor investments, dissipation through family arguments and legal expenses, or just plain inattention and lack of preparation.
Now this is the key. What is not the problem is poor estate planning. What I mean is that most people's estate documents are just fine. The reason for the failure with estate transitions lies within the family itself.
Now here's some stats. 60% of failed estates fail due to the lack of trust or communication and breakdown in the family. Another 25% fail because of a lack of training to ensure the family is prepared to manage the wealth that they've inherited. Manage means more than just professional money management, but also the discipline to spend it wisely and not all of it in a short period of time. Now I hope at this point in time, here's my hopeful experience for where you might be at mentally and emotionally. There's some questions about money that you haven't thought about that have a real definite answer and you're soft in your thinking about them. When I ask, how much is enough? You know, it was sort of like, there must be some secret Christian answer, but like as much as I can get was the answer that I've always played around in my mind, right?
Or how much is too much? Well, I never thought of that yet in Scripture. We have the wisest man in the world praying, God don't give me too much, right?
Don't give me too much, more than I can handle, least I forget who you are, don't give me too little, least I steal and defame your name. And then this issue of, well, can you be godly and rich? A lot of rich people struggle with all kind of guilt because instead of seeing it as a stewardship and from God and my priorities and order, and by the way, I don't have to tell everyone I got it on sale or that I won the great vacation to Vail or to Cancun. It's like I had the money, I'm generous with my money, I wanted to go there, I enjoy skiing, I had a good time, and I'm a Christian, okay? And we didn't build the swimming pool to do baptisms, alright?
God's blessed me. And the second home wasn't just for the pastoral staff because that's who we really care about and we wanted a little getaway for them. You can't imagine all the phony baloney I hear from people, you know? But a lot of that is rooted in guilt. A lot of that is we don't understand what God's given us, what it means to be a steward, how to enjoy richly what he's given you, and how to be sacrificially generous with what he's given you and to know you're in the right spot with your money. Your money is the clearest singular barometer of your soul of anything going on in your life. That's why Jesus talked more about money than heaven and hell combined. My money reveals my priorities, my money reveals my values, my money reveals where my heart is. Imagine, if you will, your wallet or your 401k or your black credit card that you own or your purse.
Imagine a chain connected to that into your heart and wherever that money goes, that's the real reflection of my heart. And so when you start thinking about transferring the things that matter most, man, you have to have not only a clear plan, but help those you care about, those disciples or kids or grandkids to go into training because it's so deceitful. So with that, let's dig in together and let's talk about a theology of wealth or stewardship and let's teach them how to manage their wealth wisely. I mean, again, if you were going to die exactly 365 days from now, there's few things you could do that would help those you love the most than to teach them, model for them and put into place some things how to manage their wealth because their entire focus of their life will follow that. Okay, theology of stewardship and this is sort of a summary of a lot of teaching.
I just want to give the basics and we'll dig in. God owns everything and you can jot Psalm 50 verse 12. The earth is mine and the fullness thereof declares the Lord. God owns everything.
That is a big, big step that you need to pass on. Second, God has entrusted his things, time, talent and treasure to us to manage for him. The apostle Paul would write, what do you have that you haven't received?
So this is the tipping point. This is the clarity of all about stewardship. It's God's. He's entrusted it to you. It's not yours. It's not mine.
It's his. You're a manager. You're a steward. The New Testament word is oikonomia. It comes from the root word of the house. It's the governor of the oversight of a household and he's put so much time and so much energy and so much spiritual gift and so much money deposited into your world and you're his money manager.
Okay? Third, God expects a positive return on his investment. I mean, he is the best banker in the universe. He has deposited certain things for different people at different times according to our ability and purposes and expectations and when you meet him, not to deal with the issue of your sin, but for the issue of rewards, he expects a positive return. In fact, the next line is God will hold you accountable. You might jot down 2 Corinthians chapter 5.
You might read through that slowly. It's called the Bema Seat. It's a judgment not again for your sins. That's been judged at the cross, but you're saved by grace. Now, what did you do with the new life? You'll stand before God. I'll stand before God and I'll give an account of this. How did you use the money I gave you?
How did you use the time I gave you? And then I'll be rewarded or disappointed accordingly. Notice the motivation. God wants you to share in his joy. He's given you money not to be a burden around your neck. He's given you wealth and opportunity not so that you feel like, oh, what am I supposed to do? It's to create a relationship at a level in your heart so that as you learn to use it and say, you know, it's kind of like this, Father, how would you like this money used? Father, how would you like this money used? As you cooperate with that, his whole goal is that you would have a level of joy and intimacy with him through that transaction.
I'll share a story of how that works in a minute, but this is just sort of the outline. Finally, the Old Testament roots are Genesis chapter 1, 26 through 29. And just listen, just listen to it. It says, then God said, let us make man in our image and our likeness. And then let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over the livestock and over all the earth and over all the creatures that move along the ground. And so God created man in his own image. In the image of God, he created him.
Male and female, he created them. And then listen to this, God blessed them and said to them, be fruitful and increase in number and fill all the earth and subdue it and rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves on the ground. Then God said, I give to you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit and seed in it.
They will be yours for fruit. Do you see what he did? He said, look, it's my earth. I created you. Have at it. Manage it well. I'm putting you in charge. You're in charge of the planet. You run it.
You develop it. You're my steward. Job put it another way in Job chapter 1. After some devastating things that were taken away, Job understood, wait a second.
It's hard to lose stuff, but I guess if it really wasn't my stuff, it gives me perspective. He says that this Job got up, tore his robe, shaved his head, and then he fell to the ground in worship and said, naked I came for my mother's womb and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. May the name of the Lord be praised. See, I get really angry when God takes things away when I start thinking it's mine.
How could you do that to me? I worked hard for this. This is my stuff.
I had a plan for this. Part of the whole stewardship thing is really coming to grips that God owns it all. The two biblical profiles here, New Testament command is Matthew chapter 25 verses 14 through 30. I put that in your notes. It's a very long passage. In the light of that, what I'd like to do is give you the summary.
You're familiar probably with it. Jesus is teaching about stewardship. Jesus is teaching about being ready for his return. Jesus is talking about what it looks like to be his manager. He tells this story and he talks about this person who's going to go to a faraway country. He gives five talents of treasure to one, two talents of treasure to another, one talent to another. He goes for a long period of time and the one with five talents doubles it, so he brings in five more.
The one with two doubles it, he brings in two more. Both of those hear this. Well done, thou good and faithful servant or steward. Come, enter into the joy of your master. This was my stuff. I entrusted it to you for a period of time. You had brains, opportunity, and you could do with it whatever you want, but the goal was that it would be pleasing to me. I didn't come back to hold you accountable. My dream in holding you accountable was not to be down on you.
It was you to get to experience some things in our relationship and what I had. Now, well done. Now, the one with one, it says he went and hid it in the ground, which basically says he didn't put it in the bank, basically also says that the bank wouldn't know it actually belongs to someone else. And so he comes and then he makes an excuse.
And his excuse is a very warped view of God in the context. You knew you were a harsh master and you gleaned where you haven't sown and you are really tough to live with and you're going to be. He said, okay, if that's who you think I really am, take this wicked one away and give his one talent to the one that has ten. Because see, what he did is he buried it. He didn't do anything with it. He didn't even put it in the bank and get interest for his master. And Jesus' point of that whole talent is that each one of us, according to his purposes for us and some abilities deposited in us, have been given different levels of gift, different levels of financials, different levels of opportunities.
And the measure is not how do I do compared to someone else. The thesis of the whole parable is what did you do with what God entrusted to you? And did you notice that number five talent guy and number two talent guy got the same commendation.
They got the same praise because they both fulfilled with what they had, what God wanted them to do. And part of it is because the Spirit of God, as we're going through these very basic things from his Word, is beginning to expose some of how we're deceived. And some of you are feeling really uncomfortable.
Can I tell you, that's probably a good experience. Because how do you ever change if you don't realize, wow. And when God convicts us, and he's not down on you, he's not in heaven tapping his toe, come on, Ingram, give it to him, baby, give it to him. His whole goal when he shows me sin in my life is to restore his son back into intimate fellowship with the Father so he could say, Chip, you were deceived. You kept thinking everybody else is rich, and your daughter asked you a simple question, and you finally had the guts to say, yeah, but you know what?
Your dad came from a depression area, and you've been poor most of your life, and you've actually struggled with money and didn't know how to. And so you are uncomfortable with God's blessing, even though, I should say, are my priorities going on? Yeah. Are you giving more than you ever dreamed you could ever give?
Yeah. So why don't you enjoy the house you're in, oh God, because I'm a little uncomfortable, but instead of thank you. That's what God wants to do in our life. You've been listening to part one of Chip's message, Teach Them to Manage Their Wealth Wisely, which is from our series, Leaving a Legacy That Lasts Forever. Chip will be back with us in studio shortly to share some helpful application for us to think about. We all want to leave an imprint on our families that will last long after we're gone. But what exactly do you want them to remember? Well, in this series, Chip shares some godly principles that will provide more for your kids than what money can buy. Hear what the Bible teaches about enduring hardships, making wise choices, and discovering your purpose. So whether you're a parent, grandparent, or mentor, Chip will help you share these lessons with the young people you love in a personal way. To learn more about Leaving a Legacy That Lasts Forever or our resources, visit livingontheedge.org.
That's livingontheedge.org. Hey, before I come right back and give some practical application to today's message, this is a word for men. You're leading a men's group, or you hang out with a bunch of guys, or you're a pastor, associate pastor. And what you know is when men are growing spiritually, when men are leading their home, great stuff happens. And what you also know is it's a journey, and it's really hard, and it's really difficult. And so what I want you to know that's available and Father's Day is a good time is we put a little booklet together called The Portrait of a Father, How to Be the Dad Your Kids Need. It's a quick read, about an hour, maybe a little bit more. It's going to give you the four specific roles that God calls you and me to be as a dad, a priest, a leader, a lover, and a teacher. And I'll tell you how to do that with very specific ways.
Here's what I know. It was so hard to learn how to be a dad, but as I learned and as I got some other guys around me to help me learn, my kids are different today. They came out completely different because God showed me what He expected of me and how He would give me the power and the grace to be that kind of dad. Perfect?
No way. But I made progress. That's what I want for you. And in fact, we so want you to do it with others. We've discounted it so that you can buy 2, 5, 10, 20 copies and get it to a lot of people to help them too. To order your copy of Chip's book, Portrait of a Father, go to livingontheedge.org or call us at 888-333-6003. We hope this book will encourage every dad to be the man his kids desperately need him to be. And as Chip just said, we've discounted this resource so you can get as many as you need for either your men's group or your entire church. Also, if you want to give this as a Father's Day gift, place your order by June 5th to receive it in time. To get your hands on Chip's book, Portrait of a Father, call 888-333-6003 or visit livingontheedge.org.
App listeners tap special offers. As we wrap up, here's Chip to share some insightful application from today's message. If we were eyeball to eyeball, sitting, you know, across the table, and I could say to you and then you could ask me, so, how are you doing with what God's entrusted to you? I mean, how are you handling your money? How are you handling the talents, the energy that God's given you?
And if we were eyeball to eyeball, would you look at me and would I be able to look at you and say, you know something? I think I'm being a good steward. The fact of the matter is this, of all the areas in the Christian life where we're woefully lacking, and I just have to admit, a lot of it is our fault as pastors. We've done a very poor job of teaching the body of Christ about money. You know, the word money comes up and everyone gets all uptight, don't talk about that in church. Well, we don't talk about it in church, and so what do we have?
All these Christians in debt. We have all these Christians making bad money decisions and all these Christians that are going to meet a holy God, and he's going to ask you this question. He's going to ask me this question, and it's not hypothetical. You know, he's going to say, so what did you do? And I don't know about you. I mean, I want to have a good answer.
I just taught on this subject of stewardship, and I was pretty straightforward, as you might imagine, and I had literally email after email after email, and people come up and thank me for being so direct and so clear about the topic of money. And then I'll never forget, I was walking down the aisle ready to head out after the last service and a couple said, could we say something, just a moment? Yeah. He said, you know, I've been out of work for eight to ten months, and I want to thank God for that. And I'm looking at him like, what? He said, yeah. He said, you know what, if it had been one to two months, I'll just tell you, I wouldn't have learned it.
What you said today was so right. He said, every time I've made more money, I've just figured out how to spend as much as I've made. And my wife, she's over here, I looked over on her notes, and on her notes today, she wrote, oh, dear God, will you please forgive me for being such a poor steward of the resources that you entrusted to me. And, you know, tears coming down this lady's eyes, and she said, you know something, we have committed now, we're now living on 60% less, you know, our expenses are 60% less than they were eight months ago, and we're realizing it's God's money and we're going to be good stewards of God's money.
And I can't tell you the peace and the freedom that we have. All I can tell you, it might be hard, but God has a plan to help you get out of debt, help you learn to be a good steward, and have a great answer when he asks you, so what did you do with the time, the talent, and the treasure that I entrusted to you? What a great word, Chip, thanks. Well, if you could relate to that story Chip shared or realize you aren't a good steward of what God's blessed you with, make a change today. In fact, we have a simple resource that comes from Malachi chapter three that'll help you get started. It's a short one-page contract that you or you and your spouse sign committed to fully trust God with your finances for the next 90 days.
It'll be difficult, but if you prioritize what God wants you to, you'll discover a more content and joy-filled life. So go to special offers on the Chip Ingram app or livingontheedge.org and learn more about the Malachi three challenge. Well, join us next time as Chip continues his series, Leaving a Legacy that Lasts Forever. Until then, I'm Dave Drury saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge. .
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-26 05:28:52 / 2023-05-26 05:42:08 / 13